A compact timber cabin on a tight site within the Ballater Conservation Area on Royal Deeside, which creates a perfect home-from-home for a retired couple.

Photography by Nigel Rigden
  • Project Name
  • Location
    Ballater Conservation Area
  • Year Completed
  • Key Materials
    Black Painted Timber, Birch Ply and Internal Timber Linings
  • Engineer
    Design Engineering Workshop
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Dalbrack Brown Brown 175403

The original Dalbrack Cottage was damaged by the severe flooding of 2015, with the house being demolished as a result. The replacement house is a modern interpretation of a traditional Ballater ‘back house’, which would traditionally have been accommodation for family members of domestic workers.

The replacement cabin follows best practice guidelines for flood resilience, and creates a deceptively spacious 2nd home, which delivers living / kitchen / dining, bedroom, bathroom, study and entrance space, all within a footprint of less than 60m2, on an extremely compact site.

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Dalbrack Brown Brown 175403

A simple and robust materials palette is constant throughout the cabin, providing simple, restful and functional spaces, which contain references to the previous house, through subtle detailing such as internal doors colour-matched to the woodwork of the previous house. The result is a clean and contemporary house, which sits comfortably within a sensitive context.


“Brown & Brown could not have been more helpful in realising ambitions for our small house in Ballater, which had to be re-built following the flooding in December 2015; Their design for a small site is visually pleasing (both inside and out), and has made us a convenient and cosy living space. They responded quickly and clearly, explained what was happening, and managed the process with great professionalism and good humour”


Project Team

Andrew Brown
Blair Macintyre


If you’d like to discuss a project please contact Andrew or Kate on +44 (0)1975 325 003 or alternatively email info@brownandbrownarchitects.com